Most steps can be automated. Scanning the bar code from a driver’s license populates basic personal information like name, address and date of birth. Employment history can be pulled from LinkedIn. A few months ago, Lisa Harrington, a corporate lawyer in Los Angeles, was shopping for a new car, and an acquaintance suggested she give AutoGravity a try. “Even as an executive who negotiates for a living, it can be daunting,” she said. “It really isn’t easy, especially for women by themselves.”
She decided on a Mercedes-Benz GLE, a cross between a sports coupe and a sport utility vehicle. The AutoGravity app let her check the models at a dealership, Fletcher Jones Motorcars, near her home in Newport Beach, Calif. From home she used the app to apply for credit and then went to the dealership with the lease financing already lined up.